Before a rowdy Pride Day crowd of 19,452, the Rays hoped to lock up a series win against the White Sox. Unfortunately, the Rays wasted a great start by Drew Rasmussen, as the luck dragons and the bullpen betrayed them in a come from ahead 3-2 loss.
Hoping to bounce back from a rough outing in Texas, Drew Rasmussen took the hill to face Dylan Cease.
Randy Arozarena collected the first hit of the day leading off the bottom the second, when he singled just past Mendick at short. After a lineout by Bruján, Randy stole second as Phillips struck out. Paredes and Zunino then both worked full count walks, loading the bases for Kevin Kiermaier. KK fell behind 0-2, but worked a great at bat, fouling off several tough pitches to push the count full. He ended up grounding out to second to end the inning, but his ten pitch at bat, plus several other good at bats, had Cease to 50 pitches through just two innings.
The White Sox first hit came in the top of the third, when Mendick and McGuire both managed one out singles. But the Rays turned a hard grounder from García that ricocheted off the mound into a nifty 4-6-3 double play.
A double play turn this smooth deserves a shout out pic.twitter.com/zOzL5b6o45— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) June 4, 2022
Cease continued to put men on, especially via the walk, but his defense and the luck dragons repeatedly bailed him out, keeping the game scoreless into the fifth. That’s when the Rays finally broke through.
Leading off the Rays’ half of the fifth, Paredes drew the sixth walk of the day from Cease. Two outs later, Margot drew the seventh. Díaz followed by hitting a cue shot to first that Abreu couldn’t handle, scoring Paredes and sending Margot to third, and ending Dylan Cease’s day.
Lefty Aaron Bummer came on to face Choi, who beat the shift by tapping a slider through the open left side, scoring Margot and sending Díaz to third.
Rasmussen was dynamite, finishing seven shutout innings, giving up three hits and walking one while striking out just two. He got nine groundouts against three flyouts.
Unfortunately, the bullpen couldn’t hold the lead.
Brooks Raley got the eighth, and gave up a lead off double on a pop up to Engel that landed between Bruján and Arozarena. Raley then struck out Grandal, but gave up a run scoring single to right from Mendick. 2-1 Rays, and that was it for Raley.
Jalen Beeks came on, and gave a two run shot to left center from pinch hitter Jake Burger. 3-2 White Sox.
The Rays did not go down without a fight. With Graveman getting the eighth for the White Sox, Díaz led off by driving the first pitch up the middle for a single. After a Choi pop to right on a very hittable pitch, the Rays started the runner with Arozarena up. Randy served it into center, putting runners at the corners. After Bruján struck out, chasing a fastball up out of the zone, Phillips walked on five pitches to load the bases for Paredes. But after a blown call put Paredes in a 1-2 hole, the Rays second baseman could only manage a tapper to short.
Hendriks got the ninth, and got a pop out from pinch hitter Harold Ramírez, a three pitch strikeout against Kiermaier, and a swinging strikeout from Margot.
The Rays will look for the series win tomorrow at 1:40 PM.